What to expect from your professional accountant (Part 1)

If your accountant is nervous, stumbling or hesitant to provide you with feedback or information, how on earth would you be able to trust them with your bookkeeping? And where does all that money go?

As a small business owner, the role of your professional accountant is not only to provide you with financial information, but also to guide you into the decision-making process as an active participant who provides insight and an analysis of this information.

Secondly, of equal importance, compliance with all regulation require support of financial information which ensures and supports success and sustainability. Key performance indicators allow you as a small business owner to monitor and evaluate the growth of your company and provides quantitative measures to validate decisions made. It is up to your professional accountant to ensure that you comply with all new and existing legislation to keep you out of trouble. This means you can expect your accountant to regularly attend courses to update their knowledge with regards to the constant changes in their field of expertise.

The sustainability of your company is your first objective and concern as an owner. You focus is to ensure the future of your business, not only as a going concern, but securing successful continuation and growth. There are many factors to consider that threatens the success, growth and sustainability of the business that needs to be minimized, controlled and management. This is where your professional accountant comes in handy, as they will be able to take your raw financial material end provide you with a thorough analysis and facts regarding the direction in which your business is heading.

So what else can you expect from a professional accountant? Accuracy? Business Support? Effective communication? Yes, and a lot of other traits and skills, including a formal qualification in the accounting field. Professional accountants need to do more than just the books. Your professional accountant must create and maintain a personal working relationship with you in order for two-way communication to be effective. They must return your calls timeously and must not be too busy to discuss future plans and decisions that will affect your business. You must feel like a valued client and not a number on a piece of paper.

A professional accountant must be able to listen to your heartfelt needs and respond to them accordingly. They must instill confidence in you, as their client, with regards to their services and their fee structures. They must conduct the work professionally with brutal honesty and integrity. A keen eye for detail is a must, as the financial figures can be quite overwhelming and a mistake is very costly to them and the future of your business. Thus, you must be able to rely on them to point out errors and concerns with regards to the business’ current and future prospects.

Read more in part two about what to expect from your professional accountant.